Thursday, June 16, 2022

US news site: Up to 1,000 Ukrainian soldiers killed or wounded daily in Donbass, Kiev says - TASS

Ukraine’s army in Donbass is suffering up to 1,000 casualties per day, head of Ukraine’s ruling party's parliamentary faction David Arakhamia said during a visit to Washington, the Axios web portal reported on Wednesday.

According to the web portal, at a roundtable organized by the German Marshall Fund, he noted that on average there are 200 to 500 Ukrainian servicemen killed daily. Earlier on Wednesday, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley said that, according to Washington’s estimates, Ukraine’s daily losses were approximately 100 killed and about 100-300 wounded. In early June, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky assessed the losses as about 60-100 servicemen killed.

As Arakhamia noted, over the past two weeks these figures have climbed significantly. That said, according to him, Ukraine’s authorities earlier drafted 1 mln people and can recruit another 2 mln. In his opinion, Kiev’s main problem is the lack of weapons and munitions. "We have the people trained to attack, to counterattack, but we need weapons for this," he said.

According to Axios, Arakhamia came to Washington to discuss with US officials the possibility of ramping up the pace of weapons deliveries to Kiev. Earlier, the US Congress approved a $40 bln aid package to Ukraine, which includes military assistance. However, as Arakhamia insisted, those funds were slow to turn into the actual weapons shipments, while Kiev’s partners, particularly in Europe, were beginning to focus on replenishing their own stockpiles rather than on sending arms and equipment to Ukraine.

Arakhamia who headed the Ukrainian delegation at the peace talks with Moscow, admitted that Kiev’s negotiating stance "is actually quite weak." "So, we don't want to sit at the table if we are in this position. We need to reverse it in some way," he asserted, emphasizing Kiev’s aspiration to launch a counter-operation to regain lost territories. That said, he explained that although the official negotiations were frozen, the Ukrainian side talks to its Russian colleagues "one or two times per week" even though both Moscow and Kiev "clearly realize that right now, there is no place for negotiation." Despite this, he maintained that the current situation may be settled "through compromise."

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